Last week the Government crossed a line. It announced that for the first time it would dip into the private wealth of its citizens by helping themselves to the money you have allocated to pay for your retirement.

The 0.6 per cent levy, worth an estimated €1.9 billion on the value or €500 a year on average, will impact on company fund members, PRSAs and self-employed pensions, and AVCs, which many public sector workers use to top up short service years.